Do you have stiff joints that are difficult to move in the morning? Even if things improve throughout the day, you could still be dealing with arthritis. Arthritis is a common ailment that affects many people; however, many people put off seeking professional help for their aching joints for far too long.
What Are The Different Types Of Arthritis?
Arthritis causes pain and inflammation, and it can affect one or multiple joints at a time. Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are the two most commonly experienced types:
Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis and it is usually easy to diagnose. It occurs when the joint cartilage wears down, either as a result of age, injury, or overuse.
If you experienced an injury in previous years, you most likely received treatment, recovered, and returned to normal activity under the impression that your body was back to normal. Although the injury has healed, there is a chance that the damage to the cartilage or surrounding muscles resulted in decreased joint support. This may cause osteoarthritis later in life as a result of that injury.
This is also true if your work requires repetitive motion or usage of specific body parts. You may develop osteoarthritis in the joints that experienced repetitive motions as part of your employment.
Also, being overweight may put you at a higher risk for developing osteoarthritis, as it adds additional strain on your joints.
Rheumatoid arthritis is also called inflammatory arthritis, and it is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system perceives the joints as a threat and attacks them. It causes pain, swelling, and stiffness of the joints, and if left untreated, can lead to permanent joint damage and deformity. Researchers have concluded that a person’s medical history, environment, and hormones may all play a role in the development of rheumatoid arthritis. Because it is an autoimmune disease, it is common for the same joints on opposite sides of the body to be affected.
If you have rheumatoid arthritis, you may notice that your joints pop and crack. This is because the cartilage between your joints has worn down over time, leaving more service areas for the joints to rub together.
Women are more likely than men to suffer from this condition. Arthritic patients often complain of joint pain, which is exacerbated by prolonged sitting, standing, or inactivity. Rheumatoid arthritis can also cause pain when you exercise or work, and the pain may go away after you stop doing that activity.
How Can A Physical Therapist Help Provide Pain Relief For Arthritis?
The primary goals of physical therapy for arthritis are to manage pain and treat the underlying cause rather than masking symptoms with medications. Our arthritis treatments are tailored to your unique needs, allowing you to heal faster and get longer-lasting results.
Our physical therapists will perform an evaluation to see which joints are stiff and uncomfortable, and which exercises can help you relieve arthritis pain while you go about your daily routine. These gentle, targeted exercises can improve your range of motion, flexibility, and overall function. We also show you how to prevent future joint injuries and what rehabilitative exercises you can do on your own.